Thursday, May 26, 2011

We Didn't Prepare For This

With the paint prep finished Brian started setting up his paint equipment.  He closed the lid of our brand new pressure pot and tightened down the pressure regulator.  It broke off in his hand. We purchased the 2.5 gallon pressure pot from that cheap tool place. (You know the one.)  There's a store a couple of miles from our house.  No big deal.  He  packed up the pressure pot and took it back for a new one.

mixing the epoxy primer in our second pressure pot, he's still smiling

spraying the primer
Everything was going fine until...

Suddenly Brian emerged from the trailer in a fog of fumes and a fountain of paint.
In the midst of the chaos Samuel yelled "Quick!  Grab the camera!"  
That's a kid after my own heart.

The cause of that great fountain of paint?  It was a hole in the hose of our paint gun.  
Want to guess where we got this tool?

Brian dutifully took off the Ompa-Loompa suit (err, I mean paint suit) and headed back to the store.

With all of the proper tools assembled again, we quickly ran out of paint before we ran out of trailer.  
I guess we should have expected this based on how much paint we lost to the fountain.  

What a predicament.   Our paint supply store was closed for the weekend so getting more paint wasn't an option. Letting the epoxy dry and starting again later didn't sound like a very appealing option either.  (If the primer wasn't covered within 24 hours then we would have to sand it again before spraying the Zolatone.  No thanks.)

We  noticed that the pressure pot siphon didn't reach the bottom of the pot.  This meant there was still a good bit of paint in the bottom.  Time to improvise.  I grabbed a roller and finished our thin layer of epoxy. 

Feeling like a Dad in the 50s,  I patiently (and sometimes not so patiently) paced outside the delivery room (err... I mean trailer) while Brian did all of the hard work with the Zolatone.  
For 6 hours.
Are these things supposed to take that long?
"I don't know nothin' about paintin' no trailers!"

Did I mention it was almost 90 degrees outside!  Poor Brian.
We cleaned out the paint guns and went to bed.

In the morning we were pleased with the results:

Predictably, fittingly, unfortunately (pick your own adverb) there's more to the epic paint saga.

After removing the protective covering from our new floor we made this gruesome discovery:
 The epoxy primer glued the rosin paper to our floor.

I guess sopping up the paint with towels wasn't enough!

Brian realized something from cleaning out the paint guns.  He was able to get a pipe cleaner in the tip of the 1.8mm gun he used for the primer.  The pipe cleaner didn't fit in the gun we ordered and used for the Zolatone.  The Zolatone gun was supposed to be 2.0mm, larger. 
We're not positive but we think our smaller-than-expected paint gun is to blame for the slow progress on the painting. 

In general, we're very happy with the results but we ultimately decided to order two more gallons of paint so that we can get better coverage in a few areas.  Brian is planning on using the 1.8mm gun for shooting the last two gallons.  We'll see if it goes any faster the second time.  We're both hoping for less drama.

My soap-box side note/lesson learned:  I neglected to name this post "To Hell with ______ (insert name of the discount tools place.)"  I'd like to say that we won't be buying tools from them any more but I can't quite go that far. Their tools are cheap.  Yes, I mean that in every sense of the word. Sometimes I feel like this store is our only option for local tools based on both cost and availability.  (Especially in cases where we won't be using the tool for some other project.)

I know we should be thinking "sustainability" instead of "availability." Sometimes it's so hard to avoid the temptation of going to the cheap place when we just want to work on the next thing without having to wait for tools to come in.  If I just think about how much sooner our tools from the cheap place will be in the landfill then it will be easier to make a good choice and buy higher quality tools from someplace else.


  1. What a bummer! Sorry that the epoxy ruined your new floor. Do you think that a painters plastic tarp would have prevented that? On the bright side, the Zolatone looks terrific.

  2. A post I read on another blog several years ago immediately popped to mind when I read about your troubles:


  3. The rig you purchased would had been close to $1000 if it had been a Binks or Devilbiss. I would return it all to HF and demand my money back. For tarps, throw away brushes, and gloves they rock, for tools, they suck!

  4. Another hilarious post! Despite your troubles, the Zolatone really does look great.

  5. Have you started to tackle the floor yet? I can get you some info on VCT strippers if you need them, we have to use them quite a lot. You could also look into renting a buffer, if it would fit inside the trailer, they aren't too bad to rent as compared to replacing VCT.